How To Pick The Right Size Floor Tile
One tricky question we often get asked is ‘What is the best size tile to use for a small bathroom?’ It is a question that is unique to every bathroom as they are all different and there are many other associated factors to consider when making your decision.
Big tiles can make the space appear larger as there are less grout joints and the large tile gives the illusion of space. Often we go for what we have always been customized to such as the traditional 200mm x 200mm tile as we often feel small rooms need small tiles but why? from years of doing this i can tell you without a shadow of a doubt that small tiles make your small room feel smaller. All you see is the hundreds of grout lines everywhere. Though i do advice going larger there is a limit to what we would recommend. Below is the three examples of tiles you can use for the floor and in what situations you should use them.
- 200mm x 200mm
- Great for decorative features such a federation style
- For amazing drainage
- Your floor is like a land mind has exploded (uneven) and needs to be snug on the floor
- Has a very high increased amount of grout lines
- Often do not come in rectified tiles (https://ontheballbathrooms.wordpress.com/2016/03/18/rectified-tiles-versus-cushion-edge/)
- Limited range to chose from with almost no wow factor range in 2016
Like the images below from a previous bathroom renovation in Kardinya, Western Australia the client wanted to archive a federation style bathroom. This is when we happy to have the smaller tiles for decorative reasons and its all i would recommend them for.
2.300 x 300
- Come in cushion edge and a massive range of rectified tiles for both flat and up and down floors
- Big enough to have smaller grout but small enough to allow for a great fall
- Drainage is possible for middle drains in shower and wet rooms
- Often come in a larger tile that can be used as a feature on the wall
- Great for open showers or non strip drain set ups
- Depending on tile will not allow a full feature to be seen if a pattern is present
- Has twice as much grout lines as its counter part 300 x 600
The 300mm x 300mm is the number one recommend tile by us for floor tiling if you are having a conventional bathroom drainage. They allow for adequate fall especially for open showers that do not have long strip drains. The also come in a rectified design so grout will look seamless making them practical and looking great as the example below
3. 300mm x 600mm and Larger
- Almost no grout is present with 300 x 600 and larger tiles
- Have amazing patterns that can be seen in full
- Can be used on floor and wall to create a unbroken feature
- Come mostly in rectified tiles for seamless grout
- Have very poor drainage even with a strip drain
- Almost impossible to get adequate fall without having a lip at door edge
- Combined with open showers pooling of water will happen without diagonal cuts near drain
- Can cost not only more to lay but to also purchase
Large format tiles can be great to look at but always keep the cost in mind. Not only the physical cost of the labour/purchase but the cost of having a constant feeling of the water not quite draining enough. You can be the greatest tilers in the world (and we feel we are) but without the right drains and the right rooms size nothing can be archive 100% if you haven’t got the spave to achieve the fall you need. It all comes down to look over substance.
Pro Tip :Always pay the extra and get a strip drain grate like below for the larger tiles as it will give you the exact fall you need.
P.S i have not included mosaics as floor tiles as i would highly recomend you stay away from them especially stone mosaics. They not only need continue sealing, grout that gets dirty quicker then any other tile but they also do not drain very well, The constant dampness will drive you up the wall
Well hopefully we helped a little. It all comes down to common sence. The larger the tile the less grout but too large and you have to give up something else. To quote goldilocks sort of, “300mm x 300mm is just right”
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